Open source HL7 parser

I’ve spent the last few days creating the data ingest engine for our application so we can automatically retrieve data from our in-house lab machines. In doing so, I decided to start my own HL7 parser. I did this because I wanted access to fields by field name and not just by list index.  I also wanted to learn the HL7 spec a bit more.

And learn I did! I learned that there all all sorts of flavors of HL7, each home-grown from lab or EMR vendors to suit their own needs.  We have also decided to make this an open-source aspect of our project. I wanted to wait a while to do this, but this video about the pitfalls of trying to make code ‘perfect’ before releasing it helped push this open source move.

The code can be found here:


This code is far from complete and we will be adding features as we find a need for them. This system currently is sufficient to ingest blood work data from our LabCorp machines.



As according to this recent post


Our newly released python HL7 parser can be found here:

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7 Responses to “Open source HL7 parser”

  1. SMehta Says:

    This is a good move. I have been reading lot of other pages and about your work on the EMP Project itself. Do you have any plans to release the code for the project?

    • orlowski Says:

      We have thought about releasing the code and it is not entirely out of the question.

      Code can be reverse-engineered or re-written if necessary. The real value to our product is the time spent getting the interface, options and functionality just right.

  2. orlowski Says:

    It certainly looks well organized and well managed, but there doesn’t seem to be commits or changes this year. Has this project moved?

    Also, there are some fundamental differences. Ankhos is completely centered on the Oncology workflow, which Sappira does not seem to address.

    • SMehta Says:

      I do not think the project has moved. I have not been in touch with it lately.

      I do agree that it has some differences but lot of modules/components seem to be similar like patient data, calendar basic, billing (I am assuming you will have it also), etc.

      I am not fully aware of this projects requirements but this was from my guess of what it would be.

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